Marriage is an institution that admits man and woman to family life. It is a stable relationship in which a man and a woman are socially permitted to live together without losing their status in the community. Marriage is not merely concerned with the couple; rather it affects the whole society and future generations. The responsibilities it entrusts a couple with are thus both heavy and delicate. In Hindu view, marriage is not a concession to human weakness, but a means for spiritual growth. Man and woman are soul mates who, through the institution of marriage, can direct the energy associated with their individual instincts and passion into the progress of their souls. Chaucer, the father of English poetry, has beautifully established a very noteworthy feature of the blissful state of marriage and husband-wife relation in his essay The Merchant’s Tale.
What is marriage?
Marriage is a socially approved relationship between man and woman that binds each other into a permanent, official relation of husband and wife. It is an important social institution that satisfies physical, social, psychological, cultural and economic needs of men and women. According to the ancient scripture marriage is regarded as a socio-religious duty constituted to attain three important aims of life the dharma (duty), rati (sensual pleasure) and praja (progeny).
Marriage as described in religions
Hinduism: Hindu regards marriage as a socio-religious duty of an individual.
Islam: As per Islam marriage is an obligatione. “Sunnah” which must be fulfils by every Muslim.
Christianity: In Christianity marriage is held crucial to life. It lays weight age on the establishment of a mutual relationship between husband and wife and on their duty to each other.
Key elements of marriage
Like family, marriage is also an important universal social institution which is found in almost all societies.
It is socially sanctioned relation where man and woman lives together, have sexual relation and produce children.
It is a permanent and enduring bond between husband and wife which is design to fulfil each other needs.
This relation is valid only when it has social approval without social approval it is illegitimate.
It is a relation between two individuals of opposite sex is based on customs, law, mutual rights and obligations.Marriage is an essential element to establish a family which further helps to protect and up bring the children. Without marriage family is incomplete.
It is an essential relation between men and women to continue the human race through procreation.
It is associated to the religious ceremony which provides it social identity and legitimacy.It regulates the sexual desire of men and women according to prescribed customs and laws.
It is identified as a new phase of life for the married couple.
It is the only a social institution where the sexual gratification is ensured along with social and cultural mechanism for the continuation of the family.
The offspring of the family born of marriage is only considered the legitimate which is very important in matter of inheritance and succession.